This award validates a career choice made 22 years ago. It fuels my attitude toward teaching and gives me the opportunity to meet, network, and learn from colleagues, who as myself, believe in the potential of our children, dignity of the profession, and the classroom as the foundation of our future. Education is a never ending learning process for a teacher, which is what I strive to emulate for my students so that, hopefully, they too fall in love with learning and become lifelong learners.

Nelson Franqui Flores San Juan, PR | 7-12, Mathematics, 2015

Nelson Franqui Flores has been a teacher for 22 years and has experience ranging from mathematics to precalculus. For the past nine years, he has been at Saint John’s School, where he currently teaches 9th grade Geometry and 12th grade Discrete Mathematics. He previously served as the Mathematics Department Chair. Nelson has participated in workshops on problem solving strategies, project-based learning, gifted education, and talent development. He has participated in National Council of Teachers of Mathematics conventions for the last two decades, resulting in his being granted the roles of facilitator, developer, and collaborator of multiple workshops for colleagues at Saint John’s and Department of Education appointed schools. Nelson closes every school year with an assessment embodying the idea of the subject taught. One project evolved by year’s end to investigating the possibility of building a bridge between the main island and a nearby island approximately eight miles from the coast! His passion for learning has been a driving force for the development of a mathematics laboratory for elementary students, kindergarten content workshops, and multidisciplinary projects involving physics, biology, and language arts courses. Nelson earned a B.A. in secondary education from the University of Puerto Rico. He is certified as both an elementary and secondary level mathematics teacher.